A national wheelchair fencing champion from Cornwall has claimed he could lose funding for the next Paralympics after an airline broke his chair.
Matthew Campbell-Hill, from Truro, has travelled to Hungary to compete at the World Cup this week, but said he may now not be able to take part.
It is “crucial” that he does well at the event in Budapest, so that he can secure funding for the next four years.
British Airways (BA) said it was trying to “rectify the problem”.
Mr Campbell-Hill – recently crowned the British wheelchair fencing champion – has had to weld parts of his custom-built competition chair, as well as using heavy duty tape to hold it together.
“This will hopefully make it secure, but it does keep falling apart at the moment,” he said.
It is now “a race against time” to see if he can get a replacement, and he has claimed that missing out will have “knock-on effects on his career”.
In a statement, BA said it was “extremely sorry that Mr Campbell-Hill’s wheelchair was damaged while in our care”.
“We are talking to Mr Campbell-Hill to rectify the problem as soon as we can and will also reimburse him for any costs incurred due to the damage to his wheelchair.”
Footnote- To those who might say this is much to do about nothing, I have tavelled exstensively with a myriad of chairs, from a 200lb electric to custom made lightweight day chair to sports chair and to date have never got my chair back in the condition I gave it.
The worst was when I was flying from Sydney Australia to los angeles, and we were waiting on the tarmac while they finished loading the plane, when the passenger in front said “hey didn’t you have a metallic red electric wheelchair?” I said yes he replied “well check out the window” and as I looked there was a moving loading ramp with bags moving up to the height of the plane and there dropped to the tarmac was my chair. It had been dropped ten feet and If it wasn’t for my fiber glassing skills I would have been screwed. When I got home i had to re-fibreglass the bottom of my chair.
Reposted from a story Published: Oct. 25, 2012 at 12:23 PM
NEW YORK, Oct. 25 (UPI) — NEW YORK, Oct. 25 (UPI) — The Statue of Liberty in New York will be wheelchair accessible for the first time when it opens this weekend after a year of renovations, officials said.
Statue of Liberty Superintendent David Luchsinger said the renovations, which include installing new staircases and an elevator designed for wheelchair-bound guests who wish to visit the observation decks, will allow about 26,000 more people to visit the monument per year when it reopens on its 126th birthday Sunday, CNN reported Thursday.
Luchsinger said about 3.5 million people visit the statue each year.
“Folks that have never been able to maneuver on the staircases can now go all the way up to the observation deck and experience that,” he said. “She’s not only our Statue of Liberty, she’s the world’s Statue of Liberty.”
Larry Hughes, a Vietnam War veteran, was chosen as the first wheelchair user to test out the elevator.
“You see this stuff on TV … but to actually be here, it takes on a whole brand new dimension,” Hughes said
A FRUSTRATED mother says she struggles to get her disabled daughter to school
– because she cannot find a space for her wheelchair on a bus.
Each morning, Nicola Windsor says she has to try three or four buses to secure a space for Alannamae, 6, who suffers from spina bifida.
Nicola, 26, of west Hull, says the space left for wheelchairs is usually occupied by prams, which parents and drivers refuse to move.
She said: “The sign on the buses clearly say that wheelchairs have priority over prams and pushchairs.
“One day, about three weeks ago, I went to get on a bus and there was a pushchair in the space at the front for wheelchairs.
“The kid must have been about three and could have easily stood up while the mum collapsed the pushchair.
“I asked her if it was possible for her to move it and she refused, then started swearing at me. The drivers should insist they move the pushchairs, but they don’t.”
Nicola seeks to catch a Stagecoach bus from Beverley Road.
She needs it to take her two daughters Alannamae and Reanna Ali, 5, to Newland St John’s Primary School in Beresford Avenue, north Hull.
But she says on many occasions she either has to arrive at the stop at 6.40am, or risk her children being late for school.
She said: “I’ve sent letters to Stagecoach and even called into their reception, but I’ve never had a response.
“Every time I follow it up, they say they haven’t received anything.
“I don’t know what else to do now.
“Something needs to be done.
“What is the point of having the sign giving priority to wheelchairs if everyone ignores it?
“I’m worried the situation is only going to get worse in winter.”
Stagecoach said there was no record of Nicola’s complaints.
A spokesman said: “We are concerned to hear of the problems that Ms Windsor has experienced when trying to use our services with her daughter.
“Most of our buses that operate in Hull have a dedicated space for a wheelchair-user to travel in.
“If a wheelchair-user wishes to board one of our services and the dedicated space is occupied by non-wheelchair users, we would expect our drivers to politely ask those individuals to relocate to another part of the bus.
“We have checked our records and it would appear that Ms Windsor has not contacted us directly to report the matter.
“We would welcome Ms Windsor getting in touch, so that we can investigate her complaint more thoroughly, once we have the specific details of the services she has tried to catch.”
Originally Posted on: http://en.ria.ru/russia/20121008/176483809.html
A pilot has refused passage to a group of Russian wheelchair users heading to a seminar in Germany about improving accessibility in urban spaces.
The 34-strong delegation was set to depart from Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport on an AirBerlin flight to Dusseldorf, said State Duma deputy and delegation member Vladimir Krupennikov.
But the pilot refused to fly with more than two wheelchair users on board, citing the carrier’s internal safety regulations, said Krupennikov, himself a wheelchair user.
In the end, 11 group members, including six wheelchair users, failed to board the plane and had to find another flight to Dusseldorf, he said.
Those stranded are planning to sue AirBerlin for damages, Krupennikov said.
The company had one month’s warning that a large group of people with special needs will be flying on Monday, and gave written authorization, he explained.
As of Monday afternoon, the carrier had not commented on the incident. Its press service could not be reached by telephone or email.
AirBerlin generally takes a positive attitude toward people with special needs, and Monday’s incident may have been a “misunderstanding,” said Alexander Lomakin-Rumyantsev, who heads the All-Russia Society for the Disabled.
But similar incidents have happened in Russia. In April, Vladivostok Air refused a woman with only one leg passage from Moscow to Ulan-Ude. The carrier S7 lost two lawsuits in 2008 and 2009 over refusing to let disabled people on board.
Wheelchair Fakers Skip Airport Security Lines
By JUJU KIM | @jujkim | October 8, 2012 |
A woman sits in a wheelchair.
When long airport security lines become too much to handle, request a wheelchair.
That’s the tactic some fully abled passengers are using to cut through the winding queues at airport security checkpoints, the New York Times reported. According to the 1986 Air Carrier Access Act, airlines are required to accomodate disabled travelers — who need not show any proof of disability — free of charge.
Airport staffers recognize the deception occurs; they’ve learned to expect a large volume of wheelchair requests during periods when security lags.
“When [travelers] see that the line is so long, they just ask for a wheelchair,” Evelyn Danquah, an attendant for Delta Air Lines, told the Times. She said she has seen some wheelchair fakers stand and walk away as soon as they clear security. Wheelchair attendants — whose salaries range between $9 and $14 an hour, with tips, help to maintain a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy regarding the line-hopping strategy in hopes of bolstering their paychecks, the Times reported.
The practice has even spawned a new term among flight attendants: “miracle flights,” in which passengers use wheelchairs to board but abandon them when their planes land. Kelly Skyles, the national safety and security coordinator for the Association of Professional Flight Attendants, told the Times she believes travelers shed their wheelchairs because passengers in wheelchairs are the last to leave the plane.
“Not only do we serve them beverages and ensure their safety — now we’re healing the sick,” said Skyles, who is also a flight attendant.
Peter Greenberg, author and travel editor for CBS News, said he has noticed miracle flights on the rise as security has increased in rigor. He told the Times the scammers will eventually face unpleasant consequences.
“I’m a big believer in karma,” he said. “You don’t put on a dress when the Titanic is going down so you can get in the first lifeboat.”
Karma wasn’t kind to one wheelchair faker in the past. The Telegraph reported in late August that Barry Brooks, who had pretended to be disabled in order to secure nearly $2.9 million in grants — which he then used to buy luxury cars, motorcycles and a penthouse in Spain — was sentenced to eight years in prison.
It’s unclear whether deceitful passengers will suffer any penalties in the future. Jean Medina, spokesperson for industry trade organization Airlines for America, wrote in an email to the Times that her organization hopes travelers would refrain from abusing the law.
“We respect our passengers, and we trust their integrity when they seek wheelchair assistance,” Medina said in the email
Every time I rock wall climb I catch the 7 train from Main St., Flushing which has an elevator from the street level to the train. Then I get off at Queensboro Plaza where I roll 20 feet straight across the platform straight onto the train. When I get to the Atlantic Pacific Station I get straight onto an elevator to the mezzanine then a second one to the street level. Well the ABC 7 news announced that for the next month from Friday night to Monday morning the 7 train would not go all the way into Manhattan, but would stop at Queensboro Plaza. I thought, no problem I only go that far to go climbing. They forgot to tell the public and especially the disabled public, that the rerouting of the trains meant they were no longer wheelchair accessible. Even though I am a regular and all the Main St, Flushing station, the staff know me, no one gave us the heads up. Not only did the train terminate at Queensboro Plaza, but it stopped on a higher floor platform one level above my train that I need to go climbing.The platform we pulled up at had no elevators so me and every other wheelchair bound person would have to, like I did this morning, get out of their chair and crawl down over a 100 stairs on our asses while dragging our chairs behind us down the stairs. What amazes me is when you’re on a train they constantly bombard you with inane recordings that no one cares about but one really important one like “attention disabled persons disembarking at Queensboro Plaza, we apologize but the platform we will be stopping at is not accessible.” Is that too much to ask?
Since when is the price of a life of disability crawling on greasy spit (and god knows what else) covered metal plate stairs every time you catch a train? Put a little more thought into repairs next time MTA.
When I lived back in my native Australia I worked with a mental health therapy group called grow mental health international, our mission was when someone who had been in long term institutional care was being released we worked with them from a couple of weeks before release to help them reacclimatize with society. WE would regularly take groups of former patients on weekend getaways. The form we used for each patient looked like this.
Emergency contact number—
Special dietary requirements—
Do you use a mobility aid if so what kind?
The questions above were required because if the person requires medication we need to know in case they start showing symptoms, we could make sure they had taken it. The dietary requirements were neccessary to know about, because so many of us me included can actually be medical compromised if they eat the wrong thing and if there are diabetics amongst we must provide sugar free. Allergies are important to now about because so many foods have hidden ingredients, and while for most they are just flavor to many they are deadly.
Of course knowing about mobility aids means you can in advance organize appropriate accommodation, and organize help if the pathways and tracks used might make movement difficult for those using certain aids.
All this must be known before you ever get to the fun stuff which is the point of the trip such as boating or climbing or biking or any other activity.
To tell someone who is part of a group that is made up 100% of people who are dis or otherwise abled that “it’s not their faulty if you opt out of perfectly good food “ and that they shouldn’t be required to provide anything different for special needs guests is you sir opting out of your duty of care.
If a destination doesn’t want to provide special needs arrangements for special needs guests, then I am sorry they should be banned from encouraging them to visit. There is a medical term called “duty of care” in medical legalese there is a law that says if a doctor or medical professional comes upon a accident they don’t have to stop they can go straight past, but if they do they must provide care to the best of their professional ability until they are relieved by another medical professional with equal or greater or specialized skills pertinent to the condition of the patient. In short you don’t have to have special needs guests you can say sorry this destination is unsuitable for the physically compromised, but if you do you must do it to the highest professional standard. If you charge a fee for “all meals and accommodation” by law under the Americans with disabilities act if you are knowingly taking a fee to house and feed the disabled you must be ADA compliant and provide said services to the letter of the federal act or not at all. So as we new Yorkers say go big or go home you cannot charge for what you do not provide hmmm such a paradox isn’t it.
Below is a paragraph from the Americans with disabilities act pertaining to public accomadations.
Restaurants, hotels, theaters, shopping centers and malls, retail stores, museums, libraries, parks, private schools, day care centers, and other similar places of public accommodation may not discriminate on the basis of disability. 28 CFR 36.201. Effective Date: January 26, 1992,
when you charge a set fee for food and accommadation and provide it for one half of the group but when the other half is disabled and their food requirements are part of that disability and you refuse to feed them because of the food requirements, you are in direct violation of the federal act above you have refused equal accomadation on the basis of their disabilities.
The Reddit masters are going to say I made this up they are going to say this couldn’t happen to one person so often, but again today a large ill mannered African American woman on a cell phone called me a faggot and an ugly bitch (obviously has gender issues) a C**t a mother fu***r all because she thought her over ample ass had more right to push a wheelchair using disabled woman completely away from the disabled service elevator at 74th st in queens.
I rolled up to the elevator and there was a woman 5 ft 5 inches at least 280lbs pushing a toddler in a stroller, I politely rolled over and said “wheelchair can I please get to the elevator?” ( The same one that’s the federally mandated elevator, that is covered by a law stating first loading must be for the disabled, then the elderly and then the pregnant only after that can the able bodied board) but I didn’t assert any right, I had been having a reasonable day. So I smiled and asked for access, to which the woman on the phone with someone started saying loudly on the phone”oh just some fat bitch in purple in a wheelchair trying to push her arse In front of the line like that’s gonna happen phhh”.
I said excuse me miss I know you have a stroller but if I can’t get on first I can position myself properly so others can get on and it is law after all. She screamed “Fuck the law you aint pushing in bitch” then she shoved her child with the stroller into me and kept shoving as she did she was screaming “she’s ramming me she’s ramming me” except I wasn’t moving my brakes were on. I as the door to the elevator opened said, I’ve had it I’m getting on, As the doors closed she repeated every disgusting hate filled slur and hate speech filled sentence and disgusting swear word ever invented.
We made it onto the seven train and we got to flushing. Ella and I always got to this corner fruit and veggie store near us, and I was sitting out front. I was wearing my purple climbing pants and my purple 3e wheelchair love hoodie in my purple wheelchair otherwise being Me, when a voice behind me yells “what kind of pansy ass nigger wears purple in a purple wheelchair what kind of faggot ass ugly bitch does she think she is” this all before they even saw the front of me .
As the offending loud mouth shoved past me and Zeus he looked and repeated all his slurs and added “the bitch is ugly to boot damn fat ass nigger”. The offending idiot was calling a white woman a slur normally directed against the wonderful African American people, he was not using the eubonic “niggah” which is not ethnic specific no he was using the hate speech form ending in er. His jeans belted below his thigh muscles showing skid marked bright blue satin boxers and he was insulting me? As he turned to start again his jeans suddenly fell to his knees and his girl had to hold them up. As he turned and grabbed his crotch, he got even more disgusting telling me that he wouldn’t touch and ugly bitch nigger like me.
So I rolled the last two blocks home and turned into my own building front walkway, and a Korean youth actually used me and my lap for steps and walked over me and I had had it. I blew up I yelled when did manners die? Really I’m your damn door step you insolent child? Then to my surprise a woman who has always when spoken to replied “No engrish sorry me Korean, engrish bewwy baad” suddenly sounding like a sound bite from Bill and teds big adventure yelled “Oh like chill bitch just chill”
So let’s sort this out once again the lowlife population that regularly uses the 74thst subway station prove inbreeding is alive and well in New York city, and manners caring and compassion have died. Its each overweight foul mouthed behemoth for themselves, and god help the decent the disabled the pregnant the elderly because “ I’s gonna beat their ass if they get in my way”. Then we have the teen product of a fine education and marvelous parenting(insert acknowledgment of use of sarcasm here), I finally know why the modern generation lives and dies by their cell phones, how else are you going to phone in your responsibilities and parenting duties if you don’t have the best phone on the market?.
And finally to the wonderful Asians in my neighborhood, I respect you if you wish to stay within your own people but you don’t get to play an extra from mash for fifteen years and only open your mouth to reveal a Californian surfer chick accent when you want to be a bitch. I have gone out of my way to be nice, I have wished you happy new year but you have ignored me and blown me off. If you and the rest of the Korean community hate the stereotypes imposed upon you don’t create them and don’t use them when you want to make out you don’t speak English. In this country no one is asking you to become close kissing cousins when they wish you happy holidays, if you want privacy you simply smile and say thank you same to you and keep walking. Now you have acted like you work in a Chinese laundry and have actually said “no speak engrish” while all the time being an obviously highly educated English speaking adult. You don’t get to claim high ground you are just plain rude and ignorant.
How are we expected to exist when we put up walls we abuse those less than us we phone in our parenting to the point where our offspring act like the worse kind of criminal and you act in such an ignorant manner to a neighbor of many years whose only crime is wishing you New Year.
We are all Americans, we all came from somewhere else to claim the gold ring to give our children the best life the world can offer and once we are established reach back and pull up onto solid ground of freedom those we left behind. I speak a dozen languages today I asked a Latino in his own language to please move and thanked him greeted a Chinese boy in mandarin and greeted an Iraqi woman in her language while thanking the Indian waitress with Namaste and greeted the Tibetan monk on the train with tashe delek. I just finished an email from my German friend Kristina and said goodnight to my poppa in Ukrainian I say this not to brag but to show I welcome you all I am open to all I hate none till they give me personal reason all I ask is that when I a wheelchair using woman ask politely to get in first so I can help you by turning my chair so more can squeeze I don’t have to fear for my life and that of Ella’s as I finish my request and if you couldn’t take your son straight from home to the church or to visit your most special friend without fearing what would come out of his mouth or that he would display prejudice then I’m sorry don’t let them out on the streets from me to suffer a cat can give birth it doesn’t make them a mother a mother is a woman who thirty years down the road can look and say I did ok I birthed and educated and released upon the world a loving caring well spoken compassionate human being. Until you do stop expecting we the people to clean up after them and take their crap.
reposted froma story on KTLA News7:04 a.m. PDT, September 4, 2012
LOS ANGELES (KTLA) — A family claims they couldn’t board their cross-country flight to Los Angeles after their son was singled out and discriminated against because he has Down syndrome.Joan and Robert Vanderhorst were flying on American Airlines from Newark, New Jersey to Los Angeles on Sunday with their 16-year-old son Bede.
But they say that as they waited to board the flight, they were told that they weren’t allowed on the plane.
Joan pulled out her cell phone and began to videotape, documenting what she believes was a violation of her son’s civil rights and the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Bede — who was labeled a flight risk — can be seen in the video sitting at the gate, quietly playing with his hat.
In the video, you can hear Joan sobbing and her husband expressing disbelief.
“He’s behaving,” Robert says. “He’s demonstrating he’s not a problem.”
“Of course he’s behaving. He’s never not behaved,” Joan adds.
“I kept saying, ‘Is this only because he has Down syndrome?'” Joan said in an interview with KTLA via Skype.
The family has flown together dozens of times. The only thing different about this flight was that they had upgraded for the first time to first class.
“This little boy had a seat in the first class area, and for some reason, they didn’t want that. That wasn’t acceptable,” Joan said.
American Airlines claims Bede was “excitable, running around, and not acclimated to the environment” and that the pilot had unsuccessfully tried to calm him down.
“For the safety of the young man and the safety of others, American Airlines offered to book another flight for the family,” American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller told KTLA.
Robert says the family was warned their son’s behavior was a concern because their first class seat was to close to the cockpit and a distraction to the pilot could cause a mid-flight emergency landing.
“My son is no different from a 4 or 5 year old as far as behavior,” Robert insisted.
The Vanderhorsts claim Bede hadn’t caused any troubles and instead was being discriminated against.
Eventually, airline personnel called airport police to intervene — and the family was booked on a United Airlines flight.
The Vanderhorsts eventually got to their home near Bakersfield and say they were not refunded for their upgrade fee, which they were never able to take advantage of.
They say they plan to sue American Airlines, and hope their experience will teach the company and people in general a valuable lesson.
“Respect each person’s dignity,” Robert said. “Every one of us should be treated with equal dignity
Anyone who has read this blog knows My track record with the TSA is not good the first time the idiots met me they demanded that I a gay woman in a wheelchair who doesn’t have the ability to walk or stand do both and wait in the corner while said wheelchair was X-RAYED.
When I being the intelligent one pointed out the wheels under my ass and tried to explain why they were there and what that meant for their request a private room was ordered for me as “a Combatant who wouldn’t cooperate with a reasonable request”. below is a link to the story.
Well that episode caused a riot and a new novel titled “14 DAYS” due out in December.
Here is a link to a sneak preview at chapter 1 of the novel 14 days https://disabledaccessdenied.wordpress.com/2012/07/17/an-unedited-excerpt-from-chapter-one-of-14-days-a-new-novel-by-mia-g-vayner/
Well she who must be obeyed my beautiful Ella just got promoted and it’s holiday time in September so we are taking 5 days In Los Angeles to chill out, unfortunately that means two separate excursions through the land of the cerebrally lost, also known as the airport TSA check point. So watch this space and see what idiocy they have learnt since last we met
September 4th virgin Atlantic 7.15 am to Los Angeles returning September 9th is the flight we’ll be on.